This blog got its beginnings when my wife and I walked 5,000 mile walk across the country. Until now, readers of this blog have heard only my reason for such a journey. Recent events dictate that the time has come to reveal Cindy’s reason.
In the year leading up to the journey Cindy experienced some mental health issues. Doctors ruled out Alzheimer’s and dementia and pointed to stress as the likely cause, particularly the chronic daily stress of Cindy’s work as a visiting nurse. In the absence of any other concrete advice doctors could give us, the other reason for walking 5,000 miles across the country was to reboot Cindy’s life and mental health.
The journey appeared to work in this regards. Cindy stopped getting the headaches, backaches and digestive problems she had while working as a visiting nurse. Cindy thought her mental health had improved as well, though a subsequent assessment after the journey still reported undetermined mental health issues.
Over the past year there was at first a slight decline and then, over this past summer, a marked decline in her mental health. We went in for more tests this fall; this time the doctors provided a concrete diagnosis. Cindy has Alzheimer’s. One of the most adventurous and independent woman I’ve ever known will live out her remaining time in complete dependency.
This blog and my journeys in the long term will continue to focus on kindness, community and humanity. Over the short term there is a more immediate cause to feature and support, the battle against dementia. In particular I will adapt the Help Out page of this web site to raise money for this battle.
As for life’s final journey with the two of us together, we are making out a bucket list of things to do. Cindy’s biggest wish for many years now is to hike the one leg of the Triple Crown of National Scenic Trails she is missing, the Pacific Crest Trail. Stay tuned for that hike to begin next year, and ways for you to support the battle against dementia.
One more thing: keep Cindy in your prayers.